Actor, writer and presenter Adil Ray and comedian Rosie Jones will be among the nine recipients of Honorary Doctorates of the University of Huddersfield at the graduation ceremony in January 2022.
The cohort spans the worlds of entertainment, business, social justice and engineering and includes five University of Huddersfield graduates.
Adil Ray OBE
Adil graduated from the University of Huddersfield with a BA (Hons) in Marketing in 1997, and is best known for writing and starring in the hit BBC sitcom ‘Citizen Khan’. More recently he has presented Good Morning Britain on ITV, adding to a varied portfolio that takes in TV, radio, acting, writing and factual programming. His 2010 BBC3 documentary, ‘Exposed: Groomed for sex’, won the Royal Television Society’s award for Best Current Affairs. ‘Citizen Khan’ premiered in 2012, with Adil collecting five RTS awards during its five-series run. He has also starred in Channel 4’s award-nominated drama ‘Ackley Bridge’, as well as ‘Stephen’, the acclaimed 2021 ITV drama about the conviction of Stephen Lawrence’s murderers. He was honoured with an OBE for services to media and broadcasting in 2016, and launched Cornered Tiger, his own production company, in 2021.
Rosie has become one of the must-see acts on the UK comedy circuit in the decade since she graduated from the University of Huddersfield with a first-class honours BA in English Language and Creative Writing. After working as a TV researcher, she made her breakthrough onto the comedy scene when she was awarded second place in the Leicester Mercury’s New Comedian of The Year Award in 2018. She has starred on shows including The Last Leg, Live at the Apollo, The Jonathan Ross Show and recently The Last Leg in Tokyo. Rosie has completed two highly acclaimed sell-out runs at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe with Fifteen Minutes and Backward. She has written for the the hit Netflix series Sex Education, had a recurring guest role in Casualty and published her first book, The Amazing Edie Eckhart, in 2021.
Paul Grimwood CBE
After graduating from Huddersfield in 1985 with a degree in Business Administration, Paul Grimwood has enjoyed an influential career in the food and drink industry both in the UK and overseas. After beginning as an intern at the Mars Corporation, he eventually became its Commercial Director before moving to Highland Distillers as Managing Director for the UK and Ireland. He joined Nestlé in 2001, and in 20 years with the company in a range of senior roles, culminating in becoming Chairman and CEO of Nestlé USA, he helped Nestlé and the wider food industry develop initiatives around environmental, sustainability, nutritional and health-related issues, He was awarded with a CBE in 2018, and lives in semi-retirement in Yorkshire.
Ground-breaking work on combatting violence against women and children plus gender equality and women’s empowerment in her native Uganda has led to Angela Nakafeero advising the University of Huddersfield’s None In Three initiative (Ni3). She graduated with a Master’s from Makerere University in Kampala, and subsequently attained an Advance Diploma in Sexual Reproductive Health and Rights from Lund University in Sweden. Angela has been on the advisory board for Ni3 since 2018, helping this global research initiative to tackle gender-based violence (GBV) around the world through innovative prosocial gaming. She spearheaded a strategy on eliminating violence against children in Uganda’s schools, and is chair of the COVID-19 sub-committee on GBV and violence against children in Uganda.
Andrew’s award-winning career in music has seen him work with some of the biggest acts in the world as a mixer and engineer. After starting out as a musician, Andrew found that his niche was behind the scenes, and after touring with Stevie Wonder and Michael Jackson he worked for several renowned producers including Don Was and Rick Rubin. He has engineered or mixed for acts as varied as Metallica, Neil Diamond, Iggy Pop, U2, Green Day and Johnny Cash and has won Grammys for his work on albums by Adele, Red Hot Chilli Peppers and Ziggy Marley. He relocated to the UK from Los Angeles in 2015, and is a member of the University’s Popular Music Studies Research Group and the Music Technology Research group.
Dr Hayaatun Sillem CBE
Hayaatun Sillem is CEO of the Royal Academy of Engineering (RAE). She has extensive leadership experience in UK and international engineering, innovation, and diversity and inclusion activities. She has been named as one of the ‘Inspiring 50 Women in Tech’ and one of the most influential women in engineering. Dr Sillem chairs the UK government’s Innovation Expert Group and the St. Andrews Prize for the Environment, and co-chairs with Sir Lewis Hamilton his Commission on Black representation in UK motorsport. She has also served as Committee Specialist and later Specialist Adviser to the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee.
Ian is a Chartered Mechanical Engineer, with a degree in Mechanical Engineering Design from the University of Huddersfield. In 2002 he purchased Melett Ltd, a small aftermarket turbocharger parts business with three employees and around £250K turnover, and in 15 years grew it to become one to the world’s largest aftermarket suppliers of turbocharger repair parts. By the time he sold the business, it had a turnover of £30m and employed 250 people across Europe, the USA and China. He subsequently took over the Bloodhound Land Speed Record Project, which recorded a top speed of 628mph in South Africa in 2019. Ian is currently researching investment opportunities to support new start up technologies in the automotive hydrogen and autonomous vehicle sectors.
John Warhurst is a former student of the University of Huddersfield and one of the film industry’s most accomplished sound editors, supervising blockbuster film soundtracks such as Les Misérables and Bohemian Rhapsody, winning an Academy Award (Oscar) for the latter. Originally from Brighouse in West Yorkshire, he graduated with a BMus (Hons) degree in Orchestral Composition and then continued for a Master’s degree in Electro-Acoustic Composition. John’s skills as a music and sound editor have been heard in films such as The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street and Cats. In early 2020 he returned to the University to give an entertaining talk about how he helped recreate Queen’s famous performance at Live Aid for Bohemian Rhapsody.
Bo Yang grew up in the city of Haerbin in northern China, close to Russia. He later moved to Xi’an with his parents to China’s West Film Factory during the late 1980s to 1990s, which is where he started developing an interest in film-making. In the early 2000s Bo moved to New Zealand to study economics, before returning to China where he worked in film and television. His work Loach is a Fish Too (2005) received the art contribution award at the 18th Tokyo International Film Festival. The feature film Wings (2011) and Feed me (2012) both received Innovation Awards at the 36th and 37th Montreal World Film Festival. Recently Bo has been focused on popular television series for the Chinese market.